[Editor: This is a chapter from The Eureka Stockade by Raffaello Carboni. A glossary has been provided to explain various words and phrases that may be unfamiliar to modern readers.]
Ortica Ballaaratensis: Prima.
Here is a plant of Cayenne pepper, growing in those days on Ballaarat: it withered some three months in limbo, but . . . . . oh yes, but at it again.
Ballaarat Times, November 18, 1854.
“The Reform League.
“There is something strange, and to the government of this country, something not quite comprehensible, in this League. For the first time in the southern hemisphere, a Reform League is to be inaugurated. There is something ominous in this; the word “League,” in a time of such feverish excitement as the present, is big with immense purport (indeed!) Indeed, it would ill become the Times to mince in matter of such weighty importance. This League is not more or less that the germ of Australian independence (sic). The die is cast, and fate has stamped upon the movement its indelible signature. No power on earth can restrain the united might and headlong strides for freedom of the people of this country, and we are lost in amazement while contemplating the dazzling panorama of the Australian future (Great works). We salute the League [but not the trio, Vern, Kennedy, Humffray], and tender our hopes and prayers for its prosperity [in the shape of a goodly pile of half-crowns]. The League has undertaken a mighty task [the trio’ll shirk it though], fit only for a great people — that of changing the dynasty of the country (Great works). The League does not exactly propose, nor adopt such a scheme, but we know what it means, the principles it would inculcate, and that eventually it will resolve itself into an Australian Congress.” (Great Works!!)
HUMFFRAY to be Auctioneer,
KENNEDY ” Bellman,
VERN ” Runner,
of the “Starring — League.”
Raffaello Carboni. The Eureka Stockade: The Consequence of Some Pirates Wanting on Quarter-Deck a Rebellion, Public Library of South Australia, Adelaide, 1962 [facsimile of the 1855 edition], page 33
*ortica Ballaaratensis prima = (Italian) “nettle Ballaarat first” (*rough translation) (Ortica is the name of a plant, a stinging nettle, which derives its name from the Latin word “urtica”) [the title of chapter XXIII (23), “Ortica Ballaaratensis: Prima”, relates to the title of chapter XXIV (24), “Ortica ensis: Secunda”]
sic = (Latin) literally, “thus” (said to be used as a shortening of the phrase is “sic erat scriptum”, i.e. “thus it had been written”); “sic” is placed in brackets after text that may otherwise appear to be a mistake, to show that the quoted text is rendered accurately (as it had been written); in this case, Carboni apparently felt that his quoting of the sentence referring to “Australian independence” may have been questioned
The final paragraph of chapter XXIII (23) was rendered as follows:
[Editor: Corrected “butt at it again” to “but at it again”.]
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